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Having pests in your home is a problem that will only get worse the longer you leave it. Whether inside, out in the garden or nesting in your bed, pests only ever really have a few things on their minds: eating, hiding and multiplying in a safe environment.

As such, identifying and dealing with the pests in your home should be an immediate priority. Note down anything that you have seen, heard or smelled and contact a local pest controller as soon as possible. Your next priority should be getting your property spick and span, with the help of a local cleaner if necessary. This should include cleaning all surfaces and furniture, as well as throwing out any built up rubbish.

Keep in mind that your home is a nice and warm environment - one that is safe from most predators. If pests are allowed to create a safe home for themselves inside your property, they will start spreading dangerous bacteria and illnesses around your home. The bottom line is, pests are a serious issue that will not go away unless you take action.

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How to remove pests

There are a number of ways to keep your property pest-free, such as making sure you keep up with your cleaning and throwing away any rubbish before it starts to accumulate. However, if you already have pests in your property then it will be a big help to find out exactly what you are dealing with. You do not need to know exactly what kind of pest you have before speaking to a pest controller, but you can start noting down the signs:

  • Listen - Can you hear scurrying or scratching? Insects and other pests might like to keep quiet, but they are not silent. Listening with your ear to a cavity wall, or even to your loft, can allow you to hear them moving around.
  • Smell - An unfortunate fact that you will have to deal with is that almost all pests leave waste behind. Are there parts of your property where you can detect a murky odour, or possibly one smelling of ammonia? This can help you to pinpoint an infestation.
  • Nests - Pests love to find new homes which offer both warmth and a good supply of food. However, they also like staying hidden from scary humans. You are most likely to find nests in less-trafficked areas of your home, such as behind appliances or in unused areas like lofts. You may also find them in rarely-used cupboards and other hideaways, such as the back of closets.
  • Droppings - Pest droppings do not just help to identify unwanted guests; they also carry dangerous bacteria and viruses. If you find droppings, take a photo to show your Pro and then clean the area thoroughly, making sure to wear rubber gloves as you do so.

Alternative pest removal

While it may not sound very nice, the quickest and most efficient way of getting rid of pests is to find and kill them. This is not something that can be avoided for certain pests, especially insects such as bed bugs, though mammals and even bees can sometimes be removed without lethal methods.

For mammals such as mice, rats and squirrels, it is quite possible to capture them in non lethal traps before setting them free outside. However, nests will still need to be removed and entry points sealed up to prevent new pests from taking the place of the old.

When it comes to stopping pests from appearing in the first place, the best thing you can do is keep your property as clean as possible. Throwing away food quickly is a big help, though what constitutes ‘food’ for pests can include any edible matter, including newspapers. You can also prevent them from making their way inside by blocking up entry points, such as gaps in your walls. One final section of your home to remember is the guttering. A buildup of plant and waste in your gutters can provide a nice place for pests to house themselves before eventually heading inside.

There are also extra steps you can take, particularly with insects. Scents and essential oils have proven successful with all manner of creepy crawlies. For example, peppermint oil is highly effective at keeping rooms free of cockroaches and spiders.

Pest removal prices

Whatever kind of pests you are dealing with, remember to take action as soon as you can. The cost of removing your pests will only increase over time and you do not want to end up having to pay for a full fumigation.

That being said, you can estimate the costs of your pest removal. It will depend on the size of your infestation, the number of visits/ treatments required to remove your pests and the type of pest that you are dealing with.

Remember, the best way to get a competitive price will be to collect as many quotes as possible. Most pest controllers will want to perform a site visit to get a better idea of your situation, though you can also provide evidence to help. In the meantime, keep your property clean and invest in a few traps of your own - they could do wonders for stopping the problem from getting worse.

Here is a very general estimate of what you would expect to pay:

  • Mice/rats - Around £120 if only a few treatments are required. If work needs to be done on your entire property, the cost could be well over £200
  • Cockroaches - Costs should start at around £120, though clearing large infestations can cost over £200
  • Bed bugs - Around £120 per room
  • Squirrels - Starting at around £120
  • Ants - Starting at around £130
  • Woodworm - A typical infestation can cost around £150 to remove